Old Dogs And New Tricks
Review for the latest singles from The Word66, can be heard here!
The phrase, "teaching old dogs new tricks" is one for the ages, just like good ol' kick ass rock and roll. The Word66 is a different approach than what you may expect from the typical review from Metal Incorporated, but as our saying goes in our community, "Per Musicam Unitum Stamus, In Music We Stand United", and in Metal Incorporated, we support all genres of rock and roll, metal, punk, industrial, grunge, alternative, well, you get the point, and this review is our first rock and roll review. Featuring the bassist of Queen and Blue Oyster Cult, The Word66 is a breath of fresh air in a rather stagnant state of rock and roll these days. To be honest, I wasn't sure what to expect because sadly, I have been sitting in the rather depressing camp of, "rock and roll is dead", for the longest time. There has been a few bands here and there, but nothing like what it used to be, hell, even the rock gods of old are just, kind of sad now these days when releasing new material, they all seem to be shells of their former selves and to be frank(don't call me frank!), it isn't the same anymore, they all need to just retire. But then I received a rather curious message on the official Metal Incorporated instagram, asking me to give their music a listen. I saw that this band included Danny Miranda, and I said, "screw it, I'm going to give this a listen!", and boy was I glad I did! This is some good stuff and takes me back in the day with hard rocking riffs and beautiful melodies of the rock star ilk, I was digging it, so I offered a review to them for their music, and here we are! They have several singles from within the last couple of years, all up on their band camp and on their youtube, but this review will focus on their three latest singles, so let us dive in to these rock songs of yesterday, reimagined for a new generation of rockers to hold up and carry that torch!
First up we have, Tonight Is The Night. A very strong presentation of great guitarwork and solid bass lines accompanied by a fantastic percussion performance fills this song out and carries it forward, and the vocals were most impressive. For me, the vocalist in a rock and roll band can either make it or break it, and in the case of The Word66, their vocalist carries these songs like a rock and roll god and adds that extra kick in the keister, simply put, he is really good and blends with the music very well. This song truly does kick ass, these guys know what they're doing with this music of theirs, where the hell have they been all these years? The guitar solo in this song takes me back to the good 'ol days when the lead guitarist is front and center and a crucial part of the movement and arrangement of a song, instead of them just being either an afterthought or a forced element to show that the band has a lead guitarist just for the hell of it, the solo is a integral part of a good rock and roll song, and these guys fully understand that mentality. This was such a fanfuckingtastic introduction to these guys, this is some killer stuff here!
Up next we have, The Chosen One. I have to admit, this song, to me, feels like it has elements of grunge in it, and that is not a bad thing at all, I may post all these metal songs and bands on Metal Incorporated, and hell, my band plays symphonic death metal, but grunge is absolutely one of my favorite genres of rock and roll, and this track is a solid one that could easily fit in to the hard rock or grunge elements. A rock solid verse riff drives this song and carries it through it's ups and downs, while the rest of the band steps up and delivers the goods keeping it fresh until the end of the song as it fades on that infectious chorus. Did I mention the solo yet on this track? Damn, this guy can shred! A great mid song section rocks and rolls it's way through the guitar solo before those killer vocals come back in like a chorus of rock and roll angels singing up to the gods, another great track so far, we have one more to go, let's see how this rock and roll adventure will end!
Alright, the last single of The Word66 that I am checking out is called, Just To Show My Love. Now, this one slows things down a bit and is within the realms of a rock and roll ballad type of track. I'm getting really strong vibes of Yes in this song as the acoustic guitars blend in with the electric guitars as they fade in and out, while the vocals really elevate the energy and movement of this track. If this song isn't on their local rock and roll radio station then these guys need to get on it because I can hear this track easily being a radio hit. Personally, this track is the weakest of the three for me, but that's because I prefer the harder stuff, but I'm not knocking this song at all, it has all the tropes you'd come to expect for a good rock ballad type song, but I think a bit more rough around the edges type of electric guitar parts sprinkled in here and there could have really pushed this song over the edge, adding more of that "passion" and "energy", but like I said, that's just me. As it stands, they are relying on the vocal delivery and the chorus on this track to keep things interesting, and the guitar solo is a nice touch, give it a listen for yourself if you're a fan of the softer tracks from either Blue Oyster Cult or Yes, I have a feeling that you'd dig it.
The Word66 came at me and blindsided me, and I can't thank them enough for that. It's been far too long since I've heard a good rock and roll band that truly embodies that genre. If there are more bands like these guys out there that I have yet to hear, then rock and roll is alive and thriving(and please send me links so I can check them out for myself), maybe not like it once was, but if these guys are out there making music such as this, then they can help rebuild that particular scene and help it grow and inspire others to pick up an instrument and rock the hell out for all of us to enjoy once again. These tracks off their latest EP are a fantastic offering and I gladly give it an 8 out of 10 on the banger scale. They have the riffs, they have the chops, and they have the skills, now they just need YOU to go and give them a listen and you can do that right here on their band camp and on their social media pages and show them your support and remind yourself that rock and roll was never dead and it's here to stay!
Review done by Joshuah Jones, the bassist of The Obsidian Resurrection.